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Eckenstein, Lina, d. 1931 / Woman under monasticism: chapters on saint-lore and convent life between A.D. 500 and A.D. 1500 (1896)

View all of CONVENTS AMONG THE FRANKS, A.D. 550--650.

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The Revolt of the Nuns at Poitiers.[1*] Convent Life in the North.

The revolt of the nuns at Poitiers, which happened within a few years of the death of Radegund, shows more than anything else the imperious and the unbridled passions that were to be found at this period in a nunnery. Evidently the adoption of the religious profession did not deter women from openly rebelling against the authority of the ministers of the Church, and from carrying out their purpose by force of arms. The outbreak at Poitiers, of which Gregory has given a description, shows what proud, vindictive, and unrelenting characters the Frankish convent of the 6th century harboured.

Already during Radegund's lifetime difficulties had arisen. King Chilperic had placed his daughter Basina in the nunnery, and after a time he asked that she should leave to be married. Radegund refused and her authority prevailed, but we shall find   [p. 66]   this Basina taking an active part in the rebellion. Other incidents show how difficult it was for Radegund even to uphold discipline. A nun escaped through a window by aid of a rope and, taking refuge in the basilica of St Hilary, made accusations which Gregory, who was summoned to enquire into the matter, declared to be unfounded. The fugitive repented and was permitted to return to the nunnery; she was hoisted up by means of ropes so that she might enter by the way she had gone out. She asked to be confined in a cell apart from the community, and there she remained in seclusion till the news of the rebellion encouraged her to again break loose.

Agnes the abbess appointed by Radegund died in 589. The convent chose a certain Leubover to succeed her, but this appointment roused the ire of Chrodield, another inmate of the nunnery.

Chrodield held herself to be the daughter of King Charibert, and relying on her near connection with royalty persuaded forty nuns to take an oath that they would help her to remove the hated Leubover and would appoint her, Chrodield, as abbess in her stead. Led by Chrodield who had been joined by her cousin Basina, the daughter of Chilperic mentioned above, the whole party left the nunnery. 'I am going to my royal relatives,' Chrodield said, 'to inform them of the contumely we have experienced. Not as daughters of kings are we treated but as though we were lowly born.'[2*]

Leaving Poitiers the women came to Tours where Chrodield applied for assistance to the bishop and historian Gregory. In vain he admonished her, promising to speak to Bishop Maroveus of Poitiers in her behalf, and urging her to abide by his decision, as the penalty might be excommunication.

The feeling of indignation in the women must have been strong, since nothing he could say dissuaded them from their purpose. 'Nothing shall prevent us from appealing to the kings,' said Chrodield, 'to them we are nearly related.'

The women had come on foot from Poitiers to Tours, regardless of hardships. They had had no food and arrived at a time of year when the roads were deep in mud. Gregory at last persuaded them to postpone their departure for the court till the summer.

Then Chrodield, leaving the nuns under the care of Basina, continued her journey to her uncle, King Guntchram of Orleans,   [p. 67]   who at the time was residing at Chalons-sur-Saone. She was well received by him and came back to Tours there to await the convocation of bishops who were to enquire into the rights of her case. But she found on her return that many of her followers had disbanded, and some had married. The arrival too of the bishops was delayed, so that she felt it expedient to return with her followers to Poitiers where they took possession of the basilica of St Hilary.

They now prepared for open hostility. 'We are queens,' they said, 'and we shall not return to the monastery unless the abbess is deposed.'

At this juncture they were joined by other dissatisfied spirits, 'murderers, adulterers, law-breakers and other wrong-doers,' as Gregory puts it[3*] . The nun too who had previously escaped and been taken back, now broke loose from her cell and returned to the basilica of Hilary.

The bishop of Bordeaux and his suffragan bishops of Angoulame, Perigueux, and Poitiers, now assembled by order of the king (Guntchram), and called upon the women to come into the monastery, and on their refusal the prelates entered the basilica of St Hilary in a body urging them to obey. The women refused, and the ban of excommunication was pronounced, upon which they and their followers attacked the prelates. In great fear the bishops and clergy made off helter-skelter, not even pausing to bid each other farewell. One deacon was so terrified that in his eagerness to get away he did not even ride down to the ford, but plunged with his horse straight into the river.

King Childebert († 596), the son and successor of King Sigebert, now ordered Count Macco to put an end to the rebellion by force of arms, while Gondegisel, bishop of Bordeaux, sent a circular letter to his brethren, describing the indignity to which he had been exposed. Chrodield's chance of success was evidently dwindling, when she determined to carry her point by a bold assault, the account of which may fitly stand in the words of Gregory.[4*]

'The vexations,' he says, 'which sown by the devil had sprung up in the monastery at Poitiers, daily increased in troublesomeness. For Chrodield, having collected about her, as mentioned above, a band of murderers, wrong-doers, law-breakers, and vagrants of all kinds, dwelt in open revolt and ordered her followers to break into the nunnery at night and forcibly to bear off the abbess. But   [p. 68]   the abbess, on hearing the noise of their approach, asked to be carried in front of the shrine of the Holy Cross, for she was suffering from a gouty foot, and thought that the Holy Cross would serve her as a protection in danger. The armed bands rushed in, ran about the monastery by the light of a torch in search of the abbess, and entering the oratory found her extended on the ground in front of the shrine of the Holy Cross. Then one of them, more audacious than the rest, while about to commit the impious deed of cutting her down with his sword, was stabbed by another, through the intercession I believe of Divine Providence. He fell in his own blood and did not carry out the intention he had impiously formed. Meanwhile the prioress Justina, together with other sisters, spread the altar-cover, which lay before the cross, over the abbess, and extinguished the altar candles. But those who rushed in with bared swords and lances tore her clothes, almost lacerated the hands of the nuns, and carried off the prioress whom they mistook for the abbess in the darkness, and, with her cloak dragged off and her hair coming down, they would have given her into custody at the basilica of St Hilary. But as they drew near the church, and the sky grew somewhat lighter, they saw she was not the abbess and told her to go back to the monastery. Coming back themselves they secured the real abbess, dragged her away, and placed her in custody near the basilica of St Hilary in a place where Basina was living, and placed a watch over her by the door that no one should come to her rescue. Then in the dark of night they returned to the monastery and not being able to find a light, set fire to a barrel which they took from the larder and which had been painted with tar and was now dry. By the light of the bonfire they kindled, they plundered the monastery of all its contents, leaving nothing but what they could not carry off. This happened seven days before Easter.'

The bishop of Poitiers made one more attempt to interfere. He sent to Chrodield and asked her to set the abbess free on pain of his refusing to celebrate the Easter festival. 'If you do not release her,' he said, 'I shall bring her help with the assembled citizens.' But Chrodield emboldened by her success said to her followers: 'If anyone dare come to her rescue, slay her.'

She seems now to have been in possession of the monastery; still we find defection among her party. Basina, who throughout had shown a changeable disposition, repented and went to the imprisoned Leubover, who received her with open arms. The   [p. 69]   bishops, mindful of the treatment they had received, still refused to assemble in Poitiers while the state of affairs continued. But Count Macco with his armed bands made an attack on the women and their followers, causing 'some to be beaten down, others struck down by spears, and those who made most strenuous opposition to be cut down by the sword.'

Chrodield came forth from the nunnery holding on high the relic of the Cross; 'Do not, I charge you, use force of arms against me,' she cried, 'I am a queen, daughter to one king and cousin to another. Do not attack me, a time may come when I will take my revenge. But no one took any notice of her. Her followers were dragged from the monastery and severely chastised. The bishops assembled and instituted a long enquiry into the grievances of Chrodield, and the accusations brought against Leubover by her. They seem to have been unfounded or insignificant. Leubover justified herself and returned to the monastery. Chrodield and Basina left Poitiers and went to the court of King Childebert.

At the next Church convocation the king tendered a request that these women should be freed from the ban of excommunication. Basina asked forgiveness and was allowed to return to the monastery. But the proud Chrodield declared that she would not set foot there while the abbess Leubover remained in authority. She maintained her independence and went to live in a 'villa' which the king had granted her, and from that time she passes from the stage of history.

The revolt of the nuns at Poitiers, which for two years defied the efforts of churchmen and laymen, is the more noteworthy in that it does not stand alone. Within a year we find a similar outbreak threatening the nunnery at Tours where a certain Berthegund, similarly disappointed of becoming abbess, collected malefactors and others about her and resorted to violent measures. The circumstances, which are also described by Gregory, differ in some respects from those of the insurrection at Ste Croix.[5*]

Ingetrud, the mother of Berthegund, had founded a nunnery at Tours close to the church of St Martin, and she urged her daughter, who was married, to come and live with her. When Berthegund did so, her husband appealed to Gregory, who threatened her with excommunication if she persisted in her resolve. She returned to her husband, but subsequently left him   [p. 70]   again and sent for advice to her brother who was bishop of Bordeaux. He decreed that she need not live with her husband if she preferred convent life. But when this bishop of Bordeaux died, his sister Berthegund and her mother Ingetrud quarrelled as to the inheritance of his property, and Ingetrud, much incensed against her daughter, determined at least to keep from Berthegund her own possessions at the nunnery and succession to her position there. She therefore appointed a niece of hers to succeed her as abbess after her death. When she died the convent of nuns looked upon this appointment as an infringement of their rights, but Gregory persuaded them to keep quiet and abide by the decision of their late abbess. Berthegund however would not agree to it. Against the advice of the bishop she appealed to the authority of King Childebert, who admitted her claim to the property. 'Furnished with his letter she came to the monastery and carried off all the moveable property leaving nothing but its bare walls,' Gregory says. Afterwards she settled at Poitiers, where she spoke evil of her cousin the abbess of Tours, and altogether 'she did so much evil it were difficult to tell of it all.'

From the consideration of these events in central France we turn to the religious foundations for women in the northern districts. With the beginning of the 7th century a change which directly influenced convent life becomes apparent in the relations between the Frankish rulers and the representatives of Christianity. Influential posts at court were more and more frequently occupied by prelates of the Church, and kings and queens acted more directly as patrons of churches and monasteries. Hitherto the centres of religious influence had been in southern and central France, where the Gallo-Frankish population and influence predominated, and where monasteries flourished close to cities which had been strongholds of the Roman system of administration. New religious settlements now grew up north of the rivers Seine and Maine, where the pure Frankish element prevailed and where Christianity regained its foothold owing to the patronage of ruling princes.

Whatever had survived of Latin culture and civilisation in these districts had disappeared before the influence of the heathen invaders; the men whose work it was to re-evangelise these districts found few traces of Christianity. Vedast (St Vaast, †540), who was sent by bishop Remigius (St Remy) of Rheims († 532) into the marshy districts of Flanders, found no Christians at Arras about the year 500,   [p. 71]   and only the ruins of one ancient church, which he rebuilt.[6*] The author of the life of Vedast gives the ravages made in these districts by the Huns as the reason for the disappearance of Latin culture and of Christianity. But the author of the life of Eleutherius, bishop of Tournai († 531), holds that the Christians had fled from these districts to escape from the inroads of the heathen Franks.[7*]

It was chiefly by the foundation of monasteries in these districts that Christianity gained ground during the 7th century. 'Through the establishment of monasteries,' says Gérard,[8*] 'the new social order gained a foothold in the old Salic lands.' Among the names of those who took an active part in this movement stand the following: Wandregisil (St Vandrille, † 665) founder of the abbey of Fontenelle; Waneng († c. 688) founder of Fecamp; Filibert († 684) founder of Jumiges; Eligius bishop of Noyon † 658) and Audoenus (St Guen, † 683) archbishop of Rouen. These men were in direct contact with the court and were much patronised by the ruling princes, especially by the holy queen Balthild. Early and reliable accounts concerning most of them are extant.[9*]

With regard to political events the 7th century is the most obscure period of Frankish history, for the history of Gregory of Tours comes to an end in 591. Feuds and quarrels as violent as those he depicts continued, and important constitutional changes took place as their result. The vast dominions brought under Frankish rule showed signs of definitely crystallising into Austrasia which included the purely Frankish districts of the north, and Burgundy and Neustria where Gallo-Frankish elements were prevalent.

The latter half of the life of the famous Queen Brunihild[10*] takes its colouring from the rivalry between these kingdoms; during fifty years she was one of the chief actors in the drama of Frankish history. At one time she ruled conjointly with her son Childebert, and then as regent for her grandsons, over whom she domineered greatly. In the year 613, when she was over eighty years old, she was put to a cruel death by the nobles of Austrasia.

The judgments passed on this queen are curiously contradictory. Pope Gregory († 604) writes to her praising her great zeal in   [p. 72]   the cause of religion, and thanks her for the protection she has afforded to Augustine on his passage through France, which he considers a means to the conversion of England.[11*] On the other hand the author of the life of St Columban,[12*] whom she expelled from Burgundy, calls her a very Jezebel;[13*] and the author of the life of Desiderius, who was murdered in 608, goes so far as to accuse her of incestuous practices because of her marriage with her husband's nephew.[14*] Indirect evidence is in favour of the conclusion that Queen Brunihild disliked monasticism; she was by birth of course a princess of the Gothic dynasty of Spain who had accepted Christianity in its Arian form.

During the reign of Brunihild's nephew Clothacar II († 628), under whose rule the different provinces were for a time united, a comprehensive and most interesting edict was issued, which affords an insight into the efforts made to give stability to the relations between princes and the representatives of religion. In this edict, under heading 18, we are told that 'no maidens, holy widows or religious persons who are vowed to God, whether they stay at home or live in monasteries, shall be enticed away, or appropriated, or taken in marriage by making use of a special royal permit (praeceptum). And if anyone surreptitiously gets hold of a permit, it shall have no force. And should anyone by violent or other means carry off any such woman and take her to wife, let him be put to death. And if he be married in church and the woman who is appropriated, or who is on the point of being appropriated, seems to be a consenting party, they shall be separated, sent into exile, and their possessions given to their natural heirs.[15*]

From these injunctions it can be gathered that the re-adjustment of social and moral relations was still in progress; women who were vowed to a religious life did not necessarily dwell in a religious settlement, and even if they did so they were not necessarily safe from being captured and thrown into subjection. Clothacar II had three wives at the same time and concubines innumerable; plurality of wives was indeed a prerogative of these Frankish kings.

  [p. 73]  

Monastic life in northern France at this period was also in process of development. It has been mentioned how Radegund adopted the rule of life framed and put into writing by Caesarius at Arles. The rule contemporaneously instituted by Benedict at Nursia in central Italy spread Further and further northwards, and was advocated by prelates of the Romish Church. It served as the model on which to reform the life of existing settlements.[16*]

During the first few centuries religious houses and communities had been founded here and there independently of each other, the mode of life and the routine observed depending in each case directly on the founder. Many and great were the attempts made by the advocates of convent life to formulate the type of an ideal existence outside the pale of social duties and family relations, in which piety, work and benevolence should be blended in just proportions. The questions how far the prelates of the Church should claim authority over the monastery, and what the respective positions of abbot or abbess and bishop should be, led to much discussion.

During the period under consideration the rules drafted by different leaders of monastic thought were not looked upon as mutually exclusive. We are told in the life of Filibert (t 684), written by a contemporary,[17*] that he made selections from 'the graces of St Basil, the rule of Macanus, the decrees of Benedict and the holy institutions of Columban.' Eligius, bishop of Noyon, says in a charter which he drafted for the monastery founded by him at Solemny that the inmates of the settlement shall follow the rules of St Benedict and of St Columban.[18*]

Towards the close of the 6th century Columban came from Ireland into France and northern Italy and founded a number of religious settlements. What rule of life the inmates of these houses followed is not quite clear, probably that drafted by Columban. The convents in Elsass, Switzerland and Germany, which considered that they owed their foundation to Irish monks, were numerous and later became obnoxious to the Church in many ways. For in after years, when the feud arose between the Romish and the Irish Churches and the latter insisted on her independence, the houses founded by Irishmen also claimed freedom   [p. 74]   and remained separate from those which accepted the rule of St Benedict.

The property granted to religious foundations in northern France went on increasing throughout the 7th century. The amount of land settled on churches and monasteries by princes of the Merovech dynasty was so great that on Roth's computation two-thirds of the soil of France was at one time in the hands of the representatives of religion.[19*] Under the will of Dagobert, who first became king of Austrasia in 628 and afterwards of the whole of France, large tracts were given away. Through the gifts of this king the abbey of St Denis became the richest in France, and his great liberality on the one hand towards the Church, on the other towards the poor and pilgrims, is emphasized by his biographer. His son Chlodwig II, king of Neustria and Burgundy, followed in his footsteps. He was a prince of feeble intellect and his reign is remarkable for the power increasingly usurped by the house-mayor, who grasped more and more at the substance of royal authority while dispensing with its show.

Chlodwig II was married to Balthild, who is esteemed a saint on the strength of the monastery she founded and of the gifts she made to the Church. There are tvo accounts of her works; the second is probably a re-written amplification of the first, which was drafted within a short period of her death.[20*] As these accounts were written from the religious standpoint, they give scant information on the political activity and influence of the queen, which were considerable. They dwell chiefly on her gifts, and concern the latter part of her life when she was in constant communication with her nunnery.

Balthild was of Anglo-Saxon origin, and her personality and activity form the connecting link between the women of France and England. It is supposed that she was descended from one of the noble families of Wessex, and she favoured all those religious settlements which were in direct connection with princesses of the Anglo-Saxon race.

She had been captured on the north coast of France and had been brought to Paris as a slave by the house-mayor Erchinoald, who would have married her, but she escaped and hid herself Her beauty and attractions are described as remarkable, and she found favour in the eyes of King Chlodwig II who made her his   [p. 75]   wife. The excesses of this king were so great that he became imbecile. Baithild with Erchinoald's help governed the kingdom during the remainder of her husband's life and after his death in the interest of her little sons. From a political point of view she is described as 'administering the affairs of the kingdom masculine wise and with great strength of mind.' She was especially energetic in opposing slavery and forbade the sale of Christians in any part of France. No doubt this was due to her own sad experience. She also abolished the poll-tax, which had been instituted by the Romans. The Frankish kings had carried it on and depended on it for part of their income. Its abolition is referred to as a most important and beneficial change.[21*]

During the lifetime of Chlodwig and for some years after his death the rule of Balthild seems to have been comparatively peaceful. The house-mayor Erchinoald died in 658 and was succeeded by Ebruin, a man whose unbounded personal ambition again plunged the realm into endless quarrels. In his own interest Ebruin advocated the appointment of a separate king to the province Austrasia, and the second of Balthild's little sons was sent there with the house-mayor Wulfoald. But the rivalry between the two kingdoms soon added another dramatic chapter to the pages of Frankish history. At one time we find Ebruin ruling supreme and condemning his rival Leodgar, bishop of Autun, to seclusion in the monastery of Luxeuil. An insurrection broke out and Ebruin himself was tonsured and cast into Luxeuil. But his chief antagonist Leodgar was murdered. Ebruin was then set free and again became house-mayor to one of the shadow kings, rois faineants, the unworthy successors of the great Merovech. His career throughout reflected the tumultuous temper of the age; he was finally assassinated in the year 680.

Queen Balthild had retired from political life long before this. She left the court in consequence of an insurrection in Paris which led to the assassination of Bishop Sigoberrand, and went to live at a palace near the convent of Chelles, which she had founded and which she frequently visited. In the account of her life we read of her doing many pious deeds.[22*] 'A fond mother, she loved the nuns like her own daughters and obeyed as her mother the holy abbess whom she had herself appointed; and in every respect she did her duty not like a mistress but like a faithful servant. Also   [p. 76]   with the humility of a strong mind she served as an example; she did service herself as cook to the nuns, she looked after cleanliness, --and, what can I say more,--the purest of pearls, with her own hands she removed filth's impurities....

At various times of her life Balthild had been in friendly intercourse with many of the chief prelates and religious dignitaries of the day. She had taken a special interest in Eligius, bishop of Noyon, who was a Frank by birth and the friend and adviser of King Dagobert.

We hear how Eligius took a special interest in monastic life; how at Paris he collected together three hundred women, some of whom were slaves, others of noble origin; how he placed them under the guidance of one Aurea; and how at Noyon also he gathered together many women.[23*]

On receiving the news that Eligius was dying, Balthild hurried with her sons to Noyon, but they came too late to see him. So great was her love for him, that she would have borne away his body to Chelles, her favourite settlement, but her wish was miraculously frustrated. The writer of the life of Eligius tells that the holy man's body became so heavy that it was impossible to move it.

When Eligius appointed Aurea as president of his convent at Paris she was living in a settlement at Pavilly which had been founded by Filibert, an ecclesiastic also associated with Queen Balthild. On one occasion she sent him as an offering her royal girdle, which is described as a mass of gold and jewels.[24*] It was on land granted to him by Balthild and her sons that Filibert founded Jumiges, where he collected together as many as nine hundred monks. At his foundation at Pavilly over three hundred women lived together under the abbess Ansterbert.[25*]

It is recorded that Ansterbert and her mother Framehild were among the women of northern France who came under the influence of Irish teachers. The same is said of Fara († 657),[26*] the reputed founder of a house at Brie, which was known as Faremoutiers, another settlement indebted to Queen Balthild's munificence. Similarly Agilbert and Theodohild[27*] († c. 660) are supposed to have been taught by Irish teachers who had collected women about them at Jouarre on the Maine. This house at Jouarre   [p. 77]   attained a high standard of excellence in regard to education, for we are informed that Baithild summoned Berthild[28*] from here, a woman renowned for her learning, and appointed her abbess over the house at Chelles.

Yet another ecclesiastic must be mentioned in connection with Baithild, viz. Waneng, a Frank by birth. He was counsellor for some time to the queen who gave the cantle of Normandy, the so-called Pays de Caux, into his charge. He again founded a settlement for religious women at Fecamp which was presided over by Hildemarque.

The foundation and growth of so many religious settlements within so short a period and situated in a comparatively small district shows that the taste for monastic life was rapidly developing among the Franks.

'At this period in the provinces of Gaul,' says a contemporary writer, 'large communities of monks and of virgins were formed, not only in cultivated districts, in villages, cities and strongholds, but also in uncultivated solitudes, for the purpose of living together according to the rule of the holy fathers Benedict and Columban.[29*]

This statement is taken from the life of Salaberg, a well written composition which conveys the impression of truthfulness. Salaberg had brought up her daughter Anstrud for the religious life. Her husband had joined the monastery at Luxeuil and she and other women were about to settle near it when the rumour of impending warfare drove them north towards Laon where they dwelt on the Mons Clavatus. This event belongs to the period of Queen Balthild's regency. It was while Anstrud was abbess at Laon that the settlement was attacked and barely escaped destruction in one of the wars waged by the house-mayor Ebruin. This event is described in a contemporary life of Anstrud.[30*]

It is interesting to find a connection growing up at this period between the religious houses of northern France and the women of Anglo-Saxon England. We learn from the reliable information supplied by Bede that Englishwomen frequently went abroad and sometimes settled entirely in Frankish convents. We shall return to this subject later in connection with the princesses of Kent and East Anglia, some of whom went to France and there became abbesses. The house at Brie was ruled successively by Saethrith   [p. 78]   (St Syre), and Aethelburg (St Aubierge), daughters of kings of East Anglia, and Earcongotha, a daughter of the king of Kent. About the same time Hereswith, a princess of Northumbria, came to reside at Chelles.[31*]

We do not know how far the immigration of these women was due to Baithild's connection with the land of her origin, nor do we hear whether she found solace in the society of her countrywomen during the last years of her life. Her death is conjectured to have taken place in 680.

With it closes the period which has given the relatively largest number of women-saints to France, for all the women who by founding nunneries worked in the interests of religion have a place in the assembly of the saints. They were held as benefactors in the districts which witnessed their efforts, and the day of their death was inscribed in the local calendar. They have never been officially canonised, but they all figure in the Roman Martyrology, and the accounts which tell of their doings have been incorporated in the Acts of the Saints.


[1*] Gregorius Tur., Hist. Franc., bk 9, chs. 39--44; bk 10, chs. 15-17, 20.

[2*] Gregorius Tur., Hist. Franc.,bk.9,ch.39.

[3*] Gregorius Tur., Hist. Franc., bk 9, ch. 41.

[4*] Ibid., bk 10, ch.15.

[5*] Gregorius Tur., Hist. Franc., bk 9, ch. 33; bk 10, ch. 12.

[6*] A. SS. Boll., St Vedastus, Feb. 6.

[7*] A. SS. Boll., St Eleutherius, Feb. 20, Vita,I. ch. 3 (Potthast, Wegweiser: 'Vita auctore anonymo sed antiquo').

[8*] Gérard, P. A. F., Histoire des Francs d'Austrasie, 1864, vol. I,p. 384.

[9*] Comp. throughout A. SS. Boll.,St. Wandregisilus, July 22; St Waningus, Jan. 9, etc.

[10*] Drapeyron, L., La reine Brunekilde, 1867.

[11*] Gregorius, Papa, Epistolae, liber 9, epist. 109 (in Migne, Patrol. Cursus Compl. vol. 77).

[12*] St Columban who went abroad and died in 615 should be kept distinct from St Columba who died in 597, sometimes also called Columban. Both of them wrote rules for monks (cf. Dictionary of Nat. Biography).

[13*] Bouquet, Recueil Hist., vol. 3, p. 478.

[14*] A. SS. Boll., St Desiderius, May 23.

[15*] Guettee, Histoire de l'Eglise de France, vol. 1 p. 317.

[16*] Opinions differ as to the original form of the rule of St Benedict. Comp. Benedictus, Opera, pp. 204 ff. (in Migne, Patrologiae Cursus Complet, vol. 66).

[17*] A. SS. Boll., St Filibertus, Aug. 20.

[18*] Roth, P., Geschichte des Beneficiawesens, 1850 Appendix, gives the Charter.

[19*] Roth, P., Geschichte des Beneficialwesens, 1850, p. 249.

[20*] A. SS. Boll.,St. Bathildis, Jan. 26 (contains both accounts).

[21*] Roth, P., Geschichte des Beneficialwesens, 1850, p. 86.

[22*] A. SS. Boll.,St. Bathildis, Jan. 26; Vita II., ch. 14.

[23*] A. SS. Boll., ibid., St Aurea, Oct. 4.

[24*] Ibid., St Filibertus, Aug. 20, Vita, ch. 5.

[25*] Ibid., St. Austreberta, Feb. 10.

[26*] Regnault, Vie de Ste Fare, 1626.

[27*] A. SS. Boll.,St. Teclechildis, Oct. 10.

[28*] A. SS. Boll., St Bertilia, Jan. 3.

[29*] Ibid., St Salaberga, Sept. 22, Vita, ch. 8.

[30*] Ibid., St Austrudis, Oct. 17.

[31*] Bede, Hist. Eccles., bk 3, ch.8; bk 4, ch.23. Comp. below. ch. 3, S. I.

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